Friday, September 28, 2018
Palmaria Island – across from Portovenere
This hike was not really planned. The idea was to take the ferry across the bay to Palamaria Island and rent kayaks and explore the coast line. We had heard there was a place on the island to do just that. Instead we found a weird mix of dilapidated buildings, an odd beachfront “cafe” that looked like it might be haunted, wild goats, and questionably marked trails. On top of this, Court was wearing shoes much more suited to kayaking than hiking, so needless to say she was not ready to hike what ended up being just over four miles. She stuck it out though and the island gave us an interesting afternoon hike.
We started off on an old jeep trail that gradually climbed up and around the island, giving us some nice views looking back toward La Spezia and the mainland.
We climbed up into the woods for a bit and then back down to the shore, where we were greeted by the remains of an old military base of sorts. Most of the buildings had fallen down and it had a very eerie vibe.
After this is where the “cafe” was, though it looked deserted as well. The pics of it on Google maps show it full of people and the food looks good, so maybe we were just here at a weird time of year or something.
We soaked our feet in the ocean for a bit and then headed back up hill where we were greeted by the islands wild goats that roam around and eat whatever they can.
We reached a few more military ruins at the top, enjoyed the views, and then cut back across the center of the island.
There was actually a large fort in the center that was completely overgrown and I believe dates back to WWI or WWII.
By this time our feet were hurting and we were a bit disappointed by the lack of kayaks we had anticipated, so we did our best to get back to the dock and catch the ferry back to Portovenere as soon as possible. I think if our expectations had been different, this would have been a much more enjoyable hike, but it was an experience nonetheless.